Forums > Technical Discussion > My new fire poi - a big let down

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happyshopperstranger
4 posts

Posted:
i recently purchased some new fire poi and lit them up last night for the first time. everything was goign well - nice big flames touching my hands camera was recording, i was ready to start swinging. however as soon as i started swinging the flames almost vanished - no more than a few cm long. if i stoped swinging the flames returned to nornal size. to make matters worse the fire poi only lasted 5 minutes! my mate with the same size and design of wick gets at least 10-15 mins with his. at the end i was ready to put them out with a damp cloth like i had been advised but to my surprised they just went out whilst i was swinging them.



has anyone had this problem or does anyone know what is going wrong? iv seen many videos of people swinging big fireballs around which i was really looking forward to but alas not...



-happyshopper-

EDITED_BY: happyshopper (1089551374)

DurbsBRONZE Member
Classically British
5,688 posts
Location: Epsom, Surrey, England


Posted:
Well, burn time and flame size are all relative to the size of the wicks. The really big flames you see in some of the videos are either homemade or beefed-up poi (For example, I used normal HoP poi, but chucked an extra metre of wick on each one).

To get the most out of your poi - soak them for aboyut 12 hours before you first light them, and soak them for a couple of minutes at least before each burn.

At the end of each burn, dip them back in fuel to stop the smouldering which boths dries them out and degrades the wick.

Burner of Toast
Spinner of poi
Slacker of enormous magnitude


happyshopperstranger
4 posts

Posted:
hey durbs thanks for your reply. i recently watched a video from you (very nice biggrin) and i was wondering how you got those nice big balls of flame. ill consider beefing up my wicks. currently they are cylinders 6 cm high and 5 cm across. of course thats not all wick there is a hollow section inside which is 6cm high and 2cm across. what size are yours? which type of wick burns the best?

_Aime_SILVER Member
Carpal \'Tunnel
4,172 posts
Location: Hastings, United Kingdom


Posted:
Written by:

6cm high and 2cm across




they're tiny! i prefer mine biiiiiig. The only wick i've ever used is towel ane denim. The ones i've just recently rewicked are 5 inches high and about 3 inches across with only a small pipe in the middle.
sounds too me as if you didn't have enough fuel on in your wicks. although it may burn nicly while static the movment will be anough to put it out.

MikeIconGOLD Member
Pooh-Bah
2,109 posts
Location: Philadelphia, PA - USA


Posted:
Yeah, they do seem kinda small which is why the flames and burn times arent great. My favorite type of wick are the cathedrals cuz they get huge flames and decent burn times.

It could also have something to do with your fuel, what kind were you using? Lamp oil produces nice size/color flames and burns for a nice length of time, its my preferred fuel. White gas, coleman fuel, or lighter fluid will all burn out faster but produce brighter flames (brighter doesnt necessarily mean bigger).

Let's turn those old bridges we crossed into ashes.
We'll blaze a new trail,
and torch the rough patches.

-Me


fNiGOLD Member
master of disaster
3,354 posts
Location: New York, USA


Posted:
small...i like the monkeys i got from hop. but in any event, soak for a while, then after a burn, let them cool down a bit, soak 'em again, and then light/burnoff and enjoy. my good friend has a pair of 4" fists that last about 15 min... eek The bigger the wick the more fuel it soaks...as for it going out while spinning, thats perfectly natural...i don't know about the time the different fuels last, as i've only used Coleman white gas, but it gives you a nice burn...hope this helps

kyrian: I've felt your finger connect with me many times
lou kitten: sneaky little meatball..
ezz: please corrupt me more


happyshopperstranger
4 posts

Posted:
iv been using kerosene (parafin) when its all used up i may go for some lamp oil next time icon. thats for the advice.

-happyshopper-

Bender_the_OffenderGOLD Member
still can't believe it's not butter
6,978 posts
Location: Melbourne, Australia


Posted:
warm friends make for a happy life,
warm wicks make for a better flame.
both make a mess if put into your pocket.

Laugh Often, Smile Much, Post lolcats Always


nativeSILVER Member
sleeping with angels
508 posts
Location: anaheim CA usa


Posted:
yes you should try soaking your wicks longer. at least until they are broken in its good to soak new wicks for about 12 hours before the burn

SLEEP WITH ANGELS muckieha


vanizeSILVER Member
Carpal \'Tunnel
3,899 posts
Location: Austin, Texas, USA


Posted:
What the hell kinda wicks does your friend have that go for 15 minutes?!? Kevlar wicks rarely burn more than 5 minutes (at sea level with white gas/coleman fuel) or maybe 8 or 9 under special situations (higher altitude with parafin).



I mean yeah, you should be getting a bigger flame, but 5 minutes isn't so bad for kevlar wicks unless they are quite large (and therefor heavy)

-v-

Wiederstand ist Zwecklos!


happyshopperstranger
4 posts

Posted:
i sad 10 - 15 mins its usually around 12 mins but can vary ill soak my wicks for 12 hours and see what its like 2night.



-hap-



----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

edit:

after a 12 hour soak i got a longer burn time 6 mins or so and nice bigger flames. also i did it in the dark which rocked. still not big enough flames but its what i expected so im now happy. thanks for all your help



-happyshopper-
EDITED_BY: happyshopper (1089754411)

GoodSILVER Member
member
55 posts
Location: a mountaintop in Colorado, USA


Posted:
I got some on e-bay that were duds. They were catherdral wick, and burn less than three minutes. I let newbies use 'em though, and plan to try colored fire on them so as not to ruin my good (HoP) 4" tube core. Up here at 8,600 ft above sea level the good ones burn over 10 mins (w/ fuel mix: 50% kero, 30% white gas 20% lamp oil)

take the schneak-tip


CharlesBRONZE Member
Corporate Circus Arts Entertainer
3,989 posts
Location: Auckland, New Zealand


Posted:
Personally, i've yet to see any proof that soaking wicks overnight makes ANY difference to burntime.

All you really need is for the fuelt o soak through every part of the wick, which tends to take a coupel of minutes at the MOST and usually much less if still warm from a burn.

Once the wicks are fully saturated after a few minutes, there is no need to soak for another 12 hours! Fully saturated means just that, there is no more fuel that can get into the wicks...

(Talking about kevlar of coure, not toweling)

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adamricepoo-bah
1,015 posts
Location: Austin TX USA


Posted:
I also don't understand the "soak overnight" ritual. Brand-new wicks might take as long as 5 minutes (?) to fully saturate; broken-in wicks take 10-20 seconds.

The one practice I've found that is really beneficial is re-dunking your wicks immediately after you put them out. This does a more effective job of quenching them and lowering their temperature (lingering heat is what seems to really eat up the kevlar) than wrapping in a damp towel--which of course you should do first, anyhow. My wicks have been holding up much better since I started doing this. Note that this could be hazardous with white gas or other low-flashpoint fuels--I only use lamp oil. And of course, it means your wicks will have to be "put up wet" at the end of the night if you re-soak after your last burn.

I don't think that storing them wet has any benefit in and of itself (that is, I don't understand how it would), but this would be an inevitable consequence of immediate re-soaking.

Laugh while you can, monkey-boy


TwirlyShoryuken!
233 posts
Location: Hexham, Newcastle, England


Posted:
Take the handles off and then just store them permanantly in fuel?

nativeSILVER Member
sleeping with angels
508 posts
Location: anaheim CA usa


Posted:
soaking them over night allows the kevlar to extend and the strech when they are burrend there go allowing more fuel sateration for futer burns

SLEEP WITH ANGELS muckieha


MikeIconGOLD Member
Pooh-Bah
2,109 posts
Location: Philadelphia, PA - USA


Posted:
Do you have proof of such claims?

Let's turn those old bridges we crossed into ashes.
We'll blaze a new trail,
and torch the rough patches.

-Me


TwirlyShoryuken!
233 posts
Location: Hexham, Newcastle, England


Posted:
I'm about to get new wicks - when I do, I'll soak one overnight, and one for five minutes, and I'll record the burn times for y'all. Cool? If theres any visual difference I'll tell y'all too.

MiGGOLD Member
Self-Flagellation Expert
3,414 posts
Location: Bogged at CG, Australia


Posted:
i did the whole handles off thing, and given water and kero dont like each other that much, id say that it would stop water getting in the wicks, cos apparently they dont like that much, either.

also, i've never had to, nor, i think, seen poi be put out with damp towels. ive only seen them either naturally go out, or be blown out by the poi-er. the exception would be when i was using hemp rope as fire poi, and damn am i lucky i had my safty gear about the place. silly me thought 'hmm, natural fibres, they dont burn, it'll be right' it wasnt.

DONT USE HEMP ROPE AS FIRE POI!!! sorry for shouting, but i was lucky when they collapsed. you might not be.

"beg beg grovel beg grovel"
"master"
--FSA

"There was an arse there, i couldn't help myself"
--Rougie


nativeSILVER Member
sleeping with angels
508 posts
Location: anaheim CA usa


Posted:
yes i have proff my ancestors made baskets then soaked them for days so the reed would swell and they would not leak. it is the same princible with wicks they swell causeing them to absorb more fuel and loose less so they burn longer

SLEEP WITH ANGELS muckieha


LurchBRONZE Member
old hand
929 posts
Location: Oregon, USA


Posted:
O.o

Sorry, that just not quite how it works. Reeds and other 'natural' plant materials like that absorb differently than kevlar will.

I'd go into moredetail but my freaking spacebar doesn't seem to be liking metoday

#homeofpoi -- irc.newnet.net Come talk to us we're bored frown

Warning: Please Do Not Jump On The Seals


bon.bon.fyreSILVER Member
member
1 post
Location: Australia


Posted:
so twirly never replied about the experiment he was doing ? FFS all i want to know is do i soak for 12 hours or do i soak for 5mins-half a hour !!!

MalcolmSAPPHIRE Member
HOP admin
1,064 posts
Location: New Zealand


Posted:
3 - 5 mins is usually fine before you light up

May your balls always burn


ABOBer92SILVER Member
ABOB - Pois'n'us
178 posts
Location: Northern Ireland


Posted:
waited 11yrs for an answer, im impressed by your patience but this is answered in many threads here

I dont want to be called 'the greatest' or 'one of the greats'; let other guys claim to be the best. I just want to be known as a clown, to me thats the height of my profession. It means you can do everything-sing, dance, and above all, make people laugh


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